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franc per horse trinkgeld for the driver. This includes the hire of a carriage when wanted.
For this consideration the coachman keeps himself and his horses, supplying fresh ones if his own fall ill or lame he ought also to pay all tolls, and the charge for leaders (vorspann) to drag the carriage up steep ascents. These two last conditions, however, are not always acceded to, these charges often fall upon the master.
When the traveller has no servant of his own, the voiturier cleans the carriage, greases the wheels, and assists in packing and unpacking the baggage.
The usual rate of travelling is from ten to fourteen stunden, thirty-two to forty-six miles a-day, proceeding at the rate of about five miles an-hour
ten stunden a-day should be guaranteed by the driver. It is necessary to halt in the middle of the day, about two-hours, to rest the horses. On the days during which a halt is made in a town er elsewhere, the charge is reduced one-half; and, should the traveller require the horses for a short drive of an hour or two through the town, this should make no difference.
Back-Fare. In addition to the daily charges while employed, the voiturier requires, if dismissed at distance from his own home, to be paid back-fare for the number of days necessary to take him thither. This payment should be calculated at the rate of the longest day's journey, say twelve stunden (nearly forty miles), which is not too much with an empty carriage. At this rate. the back-fare to be paid between some of the principal places in Switzerland would be nearly according to the number of days set down in the following table:
It is more for the traveller's advantage to take one set of horses through the journey than to trust to the chance of engaging them from one town to another-a method, subject to delay and vexation from the uncertainty of finding them at all times, and from the manoeuvres of petty innkeepers, who will often pretend that none are to be had, and will throw every impediment in the way of his departure. Besides which, by such an arrangement, the employer must inevitably pay back-fare for every day, whereas, if he engage the same voiturier for a length of time, he may so arrange his tour, in a circle as it were, as to discharge him within one or two day's journey from his home, and thus considerably reduce the amount of the back-fare.
It is advisable before setting out to have an agreement drawn up in writing, including the sti— pulations which have been recounted above. A piece of money, called in German daraufgeld, in Italian la caparra, is then given by one of the contracting parties to the other, after which the bargain is held to be concluded.
There are many excursions in Switzerland that
are not to be made in a travelling-carriage: in such cases it must either wait for the traveller, or be sent round to meet him at an appointed spot.
The system of vetturino travelling, with all its advantages and disadvantages, has been so fully explained in the Handbook for North Germany, that it is unnecessary to enter again into fuller details here than have been given above.
S 8. CHARS-A-BANC.
The char-à-banc, the national carriage of Switzerland, may be described as the body of a gig, or a bench, as its name implies, placed sideways upon four wheels, at a very little distance from the ground. It is surrounded by leather curtains made to draw, whence it has been compared to a four-post bedstead on wheels. There is a larger kind of char, in which the benches are suspended by thongs, not springs, across a kind of long waggon, and are arranged one behind the other. The char-à-banc is a very strong and light vehicle, capable of carrying two persons, or three at a pinch, and will go on roads where no other species of carriage could venture. It is convenient, from being so low that one can jump in, or alight without stopping the horse, while it is going on; but it is a very jolting conveyance. Such a carriage is to be hired even in the smallest Swiss villages, and the usual charge, including the driver, is twelve French francs a-day; but the charge will be doubled by back-fare if the driver cannot reach home the same night, after the time when he is dismissed.
$ 9. GUIDES PORTERS.—CHAISES-a-porteurs. The services of a Guide are needful when the traveller is about to plunge into the recesses of the
mountains on foot. He makes himself useful, not only in pointing out the way, but in acting as interpreter to those unacquainted with the language of the country, and also in relieving the traveller of the weight of his knapsack or travelling bag. He may be said to be indispensable in ascending very lofty mountains, in exploring glaciers, and in crossing the minor passes of the Alps, not traversed by high roads, but by mere bridle or footpaths, which, being rarely traversed, and in many places not distinctly marked, or confounded with innumerable tracks of cattle, will often bewilder the inexperienced traveller not acquainted with the mountains. When snow is threatening to fall, or after a snow-storm has covered the path and obliterated the footsteps of preceding travellers, a guide may be required in situations where, under ordinary circumstances, his presence might be dispensed with.
Guides by profession are to be met with in most parts of Switzerland; those of Chamouni (in Savoy) are deservedly renowned, being regularly bred to their profession. and subjected to examination as to character and fitness before they are admitted into the fraternity. They are enrolled in a corps, placed under the control of a syndic appointed by the Sardinian Government. (Route 115.) In Switzerland they abound at Interlachen and Thun, Lucerne, and all the other starting-points from which pedestrian excursions are begun. Here, again, the traveller, had better trust to the innkeeper to recommend a fit person; but it is advisable not to hire one for a length of time beforehand. He ought not to be too far advanced in years.
The established rate of hire is six French francs a-day; but, in addition to this, there will be a
claim for money to return, if dismissed at a distance from home, unless the employer find him a fresh master to take back. For this sum the guide provides for himself, and is expected to discharge, all the duties of a domestic towards his employer.
For the most part, the guides may be said to be obliging, intelligent, and hard-working men. Few who have employed them but can bear testimony to their coolness, intrepidity, and tact, in moments of danger-in the difficult pass, in the midst of the snow-storm, or among the gaping clefts of the glaciers. It is in such situations that their knowledge of the mountains, their experience of the weather, their strong arm and steady foot, are fully appreciated. The traveller should always follow the guide in crossing glaciers, and, in going over tracts covered with snow, should allow him to choose what his experience teaches to be the safest path. In dangerous situations the guide advances a-head, with cautious step, sounding with his pole beforehand as in a sea beset with shoals.
A little civility and familiarity on the part of the employer-the offer of a cigar from the traveller's own case, or a glass of brandy from his private flask—will rarely be thrown away; on the contrary, it is likely to produce assiduity and communicativeness on the part of the guide. Many of them are fine athletic men, and to carry for 8 or 10 hours a-day, and for a distance of 25 or 30 miles, a load of 30 or 40 lbs. weight is made light of by them.
Some travellers content themselves with* Keller's excellent map to guide them, and employ a mere porter to carry their baggage for them. Such a man is paid less than the professional